A journey into the past at a vintage Arita house
Iori Hisashi invites you to experience an extraordinary trip into old Japan, a stay at a Meiji Era house. Be our guests in our traditional merchant’s house, or Machiya, that was built in1900.
As you enter the first floor, notice the low ceiling that is a distinctive feature of Meiji houses. Take the stairway to the Zashiki room on the second floor, and notice of the rarely seen set of drawers installed under the steps along the way. This type of cabinetry is unique to Machiya style Arita houses. Art objects or a Ikebana floral arrangement will greet you from the Zashiki’s tokonoma (alcove). Above you rises the Funazoko tenjo ceiling (literally, ship’s bottom), whose vaulted contour enhances the room’s feeling of spaciousness. This is constructed in the sukiya shoin (tea service room) style
Use Iori Hisashi as your home base, from which you can easily explore our quant, but lively town of Arita, nestled in a green mountain valley of Saga Prefecture, Kyushu. Indeed, the Arita Foklore Museum is just steps away from our door. Historically, Arita is a very important site in Japan, for it is the original location for the introduction into and development of fine porcelain-ware. See the Izumiyama kaolin quarry, which enabled this industry to become established in Japan. A short train ride to the Upper Arita Station and a short walk (see map) will allow you to marvel at a 1000-year old ginko tree, which is a National Cultural Heritage treasure. Sit in a traditional garden there and enjoy a cup of tea in the tearoom.